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Wirral University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

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Kidney Services

Who we are

The Wirral and Chester Kidney Service is our renal service that is provided across the following three sites:

  • Arrowe Park Hospital
  • Clatterbridge Hospital
  • The Countess of Chester Hospital (satellite unit)

The function of the kidneys

It is far easier to manage your condition if you understand what kidneys do, what happens when they stop working as they should, and how treatments can replace the functions of normal kidneys.

The kidneys are two bean shaped organs situated on either side of the spine. They are responsible for filtering waste products and fluid from your blood.

Each kidney contains approximately one million nephrons. It is the nephron that is responsible for filtering and processing the blood that passes through, to form what we will eventually see as urine.

The kidneys will regulate the amount of fluid, and also the levels of electrolytes such as potassium, calcium and magnesium to ensure that levels within the blood remain stable. Waste products such as urea and creatinine are also filtered.

In addition, the kidneys also produce several hormones:

  • Erythropoetin, a hormone which ensures that red blood cells are produced
  • Renin, a hormone that regulates blood pressure
  • Vitamin D is also activated in the kidney, essential for ensuring that calcium is absorbed rom food that we eat

Renal services at Arrowe Park Hospital

The Renal Unit, based on ward 31 at Arrowe Park Hospital, is the main site for renal patients within the catchment area of Wirral, Chester and Ellesmere Port. Occasionally we have patients from North Wales.

Ward 31 is a combined medical and renal unit.

The unit has 19 stations and 2 isolation rooms for patients requiring haemodialysis (dialysis of the blood to remove toxic substances) or haemodiafiltration (a renal replacement therapy similar to hemodialysis) plus 10 medical inpatient beds.

The dialysis unit is open from Monday to Saturday and has three sessions per day – in the morning, afternoon and twilight.

The medical beds function 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.

Renal Services at Clatterbridge Hospital

The Clatterbridge Dialysis Unit is located in Clatterbridge Hospital in Bebington, situated in the main building next to Wirral Neurological Rehabilitation Unit. Since August 2008 the unit has been run in partnership with Fresenius Medical Care Renal Services Ltd.

The Unit has ten stations and two isolation rooms for patients requiring haemodialysis or haemodiafiltration.

The Unit is open from Monday to Saturday and has two sessions a day - in the morning and in the afternoon.

Renal Services at The Countess of Chester Hospital

The Chester Dialysis Unit is situated on the Countess of Chester Hospital site.

The renal unit at the Countess was opened in January 2006. It is part of a renal outpatient department that includes home therapies, outpatient clinics and an intravenous iron programme.

The unit has 17 stations for patients requiring haemodialysis or haemodiafiltration.

The dialysis unit is open from Monday to Saturday and has three sessions per day – in the morning, afternoon and twilight.

Wirral and Chester Kidney Service

Our renal service is provided across the following three sites:

  • Arrowe Park Hospital
  • Clatterbridge Hospital
  • The Countess of Chester Hospital (satellite unit)

It is far easier to manage your condition if you understand what kidneys do, what happens when they stop working as they should, and how treatments can replace the functions of normal kidneys.

The kidneys are two bean shaped organs situated on either side of the spine. They are responsible for filtering waste products and fluid from your blood.

Each kidney contains approximately one million nephrons. It is the nephron that is responsible for filtering and processing the blood that passes through, to form what we will eventually see as urine.

The kidneys will regulate the amount of fluid, and also the levels of electrolytes such as potassium, calcium and magnesium to ensure that levels within the blood remain stable. Waste products such as urea and creatinine are also filtered.

In addition, the kidneys also produce several hormones:

Erythropoetin, a hormone which ensures that red blood cells are produced
Renin, a hormone that regulates blood pressure
Vitamin D is also activated in the kidney, essential for ensuring that calcium is absorbed from food that we eat